The Thirty Years War, 1618–48

David Parrott

in The Practice of Strategy

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199608638
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731754 | DOI:
The Thirty Years War, 1618–48

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The Thirty Years War, one of the most destructive episodes in European history, devastated central Europe in general and Germany in particular. Waged between 1618 and 1648, it was a series of conflicts that merged together rather than a single war. David Parrott argues that the Thirty Years War reflected different, albeit interconnected, sets of aims and security concerns: the struggle over the political form of the Holy Roman Empire, focused upon the reach and influence of the Austrian Habsburg monarchy; the conflict between the Spanish Habsburg monarchy and the breakaway United Provinces; and the hostility between the French monarchy and the Habsburg Imperial system. Other concerns, especially mounting religious tensions, gravitated around these political issues, leading to the successive involvement of additional states. While some warring parties periodically sought compromise within the framework of the Holy Roman Empire, military victories led to political opportunism that prolonged the war.

Keywords: Thirty Years War; strategy; war; European history; Holy Roman Empire; Habsburg monarchy; Germany; France

Chapter.  12766 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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